Do you remember January 8, 2011? Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was shot in the head that day while hosting a “Congress in Your Corner” gathering outside a Tucson supermarket. Immediately after the shooting, no one knew if Giffords would survive. However, she did. Although she still suffers side effects, Giffords has made a remarkable recovery.
Giffords was only one of the two million Americans who suffered a brain injury in 2011. About 100,000 of those victims suffered permanent physical, neurological, emotional, or cognitive effects that affected their ability to return to their previous lives. For these brain-injury victims, recovery is a long process.
The brain is the most complicated organ in the body. Damage to the brain can affect mobility, physical coordination, balance, speech, emotions, communication, and memory. Many of these lost skills can be regained—if the accident victim receives therapy immediately after the injury is stabilized.
After her injury, Giffords was put into a medically induced coma, in order to allow her brain time to heal. When she was brought out of the coma, she was unable to speak, read, or write. She suffered from vision problems and partial paralysis and could not walk. Giffords needed to relearn these skills. She was transferred to a rehabilitation center for physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy. She was there for six months and continued to undergo therapy and rehabilitation after returning home.
This is what happened to Giffords, but your loved one may have a similar experience after a brain injury:
- The injury victim will need time for the brain to heal from its physical injuries. Doctors may suggest a medically induced coma.
- Your loved one will need to relearn the skills lost during the injury. The best way to do this is through intensive, in-patient physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy.
- Your loved one will return home but will need ongoing therapy.
While accident victims who suffer traumatic brain injuries face the same difficult road to recovery, many will not be able to afford the care that Giffords received. Most insurance plans will cover the brain surgery and intensive care needed to save a patient’s life but offer few benefits for the therapy and rehabilitation that are needed for brain-injury patients to regain lost skills.
According to the National Institute for Disability and Rehabilitation Research, two-thirds of brain-injury victims receive no additional care after their hospital stay. Many of these patients are transferred directly to nursing homes, with no opportunity for the rehabilitation that might allow them to lead independent or semi-independent lives.
Since returning home, Giffords has led the Pledge of Allegiance at the Democratic National Convention and testified before Congress. She has made the type of remarkable recovery that should be available to every victim of traumatic brain injury, no matter the cause. Your loved one deserves the same opportunity to lead a full and productive life.
Catastrophic Injury Attorneys in Atlanta, GA
The Atlanta personal injury lawyers at Kaufman Law, P.C. understand how frustrating it can be to see a loved one suffer and not be able to provide the necessary care. It is our mission to help Georgia accident victims receive adequate and fair compensation to provide all the care that is needed. To learn how a personal injury claim can help your family, contact Kaufman Law. The initial consultation is free, and we take all cases on a contingency basis; this means you only pay if we win your case.